Cork bound train puts young people on track for EU opportunities

A specially commissioned train arrived in Cork Kent station on Tuesday, which put over 200 young people on track to discovering European opportunities.
Cork bound train puts young people on track for EU opportunities

Pupils of St. Mary's kHoly Faith Aimee Fagan, Gia Cepeda and Sofia Priniotaki on the Léargas commissioned train which ran between Dublin and Cork to mark the European Year of Youth, where children took part in activities and interactive workshops on board at Kent Station, Cork. Picture Dan Linehan

A specially commissioned train arrived in Cork Kent station on Tuesday, which put over 200 young people on track to discovering European opportunities.

Not for profit agency Léargas welcomed young people aboard the train as part of All Aboard - European Year of Youth (EYY) initiative to raise awareness of local, national and European opportunities available to young people in Ireland.

The train departed Heston Station in Dublin on Tuesday morning, stopping at Kildare, Portlaoise, Thurles and Limerick to collect invited young people, aged between 16-20, from schools and youth groups along the route to Cork.

Each carriage on the train hosted a different workshop on topics such as sustainable travel, inclusion and equality, and climate change – with the journey designed to educate and empower young people to access opportunities for travel, work, study and volunteering across Europe.

 Janice McGarry with pupils Sarah Grogan, Olivia D'Arcy, Jessica Gray, Igor Malecki and Stephen Healy who arrived on the Léargas commissioned train which ran between Dublin and Cork to mark the European Year of Youth, where children took part in activities and interactive workshops on board at Kent Station, Cork. Picture Dan Linehan
Janice McGarry with pupils Sarah Grogan, Olivia D'Arcy, Jessica Gray, Igor Malecki and Stephen Healy who arrived on the Léargas commissioned train which ran between Dublin and Cork to mark the European Year of Youth, where children took part in activities and interactive workshops on board at Kent Station, Cork. Picture Dan Linehan

“Today, we’ll be introducing these young people to the European Youth Portal to learn about all the opportunities available to them through the EU, such as Erasmus+, the European Solidarity Corps and Discover EU – which could enable them to travel Europe on a free rail pass,” said Emma Grainger, Léargas’ EYY Coordinator, speaking at Heuston Station ahead of departure.

“Our hope is that this will be just the first leg of a European journey for these young people and our team are here to help them discover what could come next!” she added.

 Pupils who arrived on the Léargas commissioned train which ran between Dublin and Cork to mark the European Year of Youth, where children took part in activities and interactive workshops on board at Kent Station, Cork. Picture Dan Linehan
Pupils who arrived on the Léargas commissioned train which ran between Dublin and Cork to mark the European Year of Youth, where children took part in activities and interactive workshops on board at Kent Station, Cork. Picture Dan Linehan

The European Union has designated 2022 the European Year of Youth, an initiative which aims to celebrate young people and support their engagement with opportunities available at a local, regional and European level.

The scheme will also promote the importance of young people’s engagement in policy-making at all levels, highlighting the green and digital transformations among other Union policies.

Minister Roderic O’Gorman said the All Aboard train “epitomises exactly what the European Year of Youth is all about”.

“After the opportunity deficit caused by the pandemic young people are on the move again, connecting with their peers, having their voices heard and learning about the many fantastic opportunities that are available to them,” he said.

“I am also delighted to be able to provide additional funding to the European Year of Youth Micro Grants Scheme, which has had an enormously positive response since its launch in March. I am confident this additional funding will have a meaningful impact for young people by supporting even more activities that promote youth opportunity, engagement and inclusion. I would encourage young people and those who work with them to check out the scheme and get involved,” he added.

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